How To Deposit
The two methods of depositing employment taxes, including Form 945 taxes, are discussed below. See page 17 for exceptions explaining when taxes may
be paid with the tax return instead of deposited.
Electronic deposit requirement.
You must make electronic deposits of all depository taxes (such as employment tax, excise tax, and corporate income tax) using the Electronic
Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS) in 2002 if:
- The total deposits of such taxes in 2000 were more than $200,000 or
- You were required to use EFTPS in 2001.
If you are required to use EFTPS and fail to do so, you may be subject to a 10% penalty. If you are not required to use EFTPS, you may participate
voluntarily. To get more information or to enroll in EFTPS, call 1-800-555-4477 or 1-800-945-8400.
Depositing on time.
For deposits made by EFTPS to be on time, you must initiate the transaction at least one business day before the date the deposit is due.
Making deposits with FTD coupons.
If you are not making deposits by EFTPS, use Form 8109,
Federal Tax Deposit Coupon, to make the deposits at an authorized financial institution.
For new employers, the IRS will send you a Federal Tax Deposit (FTD) coupon book 5 to 6 weeks after you receive an employer identification number
(EIN). (Apply for an EIN on Form SS-4.) The IRS will keep track of the number of FTD coupons you use and automatically will send you
additional coupons when you need them. If you do not receive your resupply of FTD coupons, call 1-800-829-1040. You can have the FTD coupon books sent
to a branch office, tax preparer, or service bureau that is making your deposits by showing that address on Form 8109-C, FTD Address
Change, which is in the FTD coupon book. (Filing Form 8109-C will not change your address of record; it will change only the address where the FTD
coupons are mailed.) The FTD coupons will be preprinted with your name, address, and EIN. They have entry boxes for indicating the type of tax and the
tax period for which the deposit is made.
It is very important to clearly mark the correct type of tax and tax period on each FTD coupon. This information is used by the IRS to credit your
If you have branch offices depositing taxes, give them FTD coupons and complete instructions so they can deposit the taxes when due.
Please use only your FTD coupons. If you use anyone else's FTD coupon, you may be subject to the failure to deposit penalty. This is because your
account will be underpaid by the amount of the deposit credited to the other person's account. See Deposit Penalties on page 21 for
How to deposit with an FTD coupon.
Mail or deliver each FTD coupon and a single payment covering the taxes to be deposited to an authorized depositary. An authorized depositary is a
financial institution (e.g., a commercial bank) that is authorized to accept Federal tax deposits. Follow the instructions in the FTD coupon book.
Make the check or money order payable to the depositary. To help ensure proper crediting of your account, include your EIN, the type of tax (e.g.,
Form 941), and tax period to which the payment applies on your check or money order.
Authorized depositaries must accept cash, a postal money order drawn to the order of the depositary, or a check or draft drawn on and to the order
of the depositary. You may deposit taxes with a check drawn on another financial institution only if the depositary is willing to accept that form of
payment. Be sure that the financial institution where you make deposits is an authorized depositary. Deposits made at an unauthorized institution may
be subject to the failure to deposit penalty.
If you prefer, you may mail your coupon and payment to Financial Agent, Federal Tax Deposit Processing, P.O. Box 970030, St. Louis, MO 63197. Make
your check or money order payable to Financial Agent.
Depositing on time.
The IRS determines whether deposits are on time by the date they are received by an authorized depositary. To be considered timely, the funds must
be available to the depositary on the deposit due date before the institution's daily cutoff deadline. Contact your local depositary for information
concerning check clearance and cutoff schedules. However, a deposit received by the authorized depositary after the due date will be considered timely
if the taxpayer establishes that it was mailed in the United States at least 2 days before the due date.
If you are required to deposit any taxes more than once a month, any deposit of $20,000 or more must be made by its due date to be timely.
Depositing without an EIN.
If you have applied for an EIN but have not received it, and you must make a deposit, make the deposit with the IRS. Do not
make the deposit at an authorized depositary. Make it payable to the United States Treasury and show on it your name (as shown on Form
SS-4), address, kind of tax, period covered, and date you applied for an EIN. Send an explanation with the deposit. Do not use Form
8109-B, Federal Tax Deposit Coupon, in this situation.
Depositing without Form 8109.
If you do not have the preprinted Form 8109, you may use Form 8109-B to make deposits. Form 8109-B is an over-the-counter FTD coupon that is not
preprinted with your identifying information. You may get this form by calling 1-800-829-1040. Be sure to have your EIN ready when you call.
Use Form 8109-B to make deposits only if -
- You are a new employer and you have been assigned an EIN, but you have not received your initial supply of Forms 8109 or
- You have not received your resupply of preprinted Forms 8109.
For your records, a stub is provided with each FTD coupon in the coupon book. The FTD coupon itself will not be returned. It is used to credit your
account. Your check, bank receipt, or money order is your receipt.
How to claim credit for overpayments.
If you deposited more than the right amount of taxes for a quarter, you can choose on Form 941 for that quarter to have the overpayment refunded or
applied as a credit to your next return. Do not ask the depositary or EFTPS to request a refund from the IRS for you.
Penalties may apply if you do not make required deposits on time, make deposits for less than the required amount, or if you do not use EFTPS when
required. The penalties do not apply if any failure to make a proper and timely deposit was due to reasonable cause and not to willful neglect. For
amounts not properly or timely deposited, the penalty rates are:
||Deposits made 1 to 5 days late.
||Deposits made 6 to 15 days late.
||Deposits made 16 or more days late. Also applies to amounts paid within 10 days of the date of the first notice the IRS sent asking for the tax due.
||Deposits made at an unauthorized financial institution, paid directly to the IRS, or paid with your tax return (but see Depositing without an EIN above and Payment with return earlier for exceptions).
||Amounts subject to electronic deposit requirements but not deposited using EFTPS.
||Amounts still unpaid more than 10 days after the date of the first notice the IRS sent asking for the tax due or the day on which you receive notice and demand for immediate payment, whichever is earlier.
Order in which deposits are applied.
Beginning in 2002, deposits generally are applied to the most recent tax liability within the quarter. For examples on how the IRS will apply
deposits, see Rev. Proc. 2001-58 (2001-50 I.R.B. 579). Before 2002, deposits generally were applied first to the oldest tax liability. However, if you
receive a failure-to-deposit penalty notice, you may designate how your payment is to be applied in order to minimize the amount of the penalty.
Follow the instructions on the penalty notice you receive. For more information on designating deposits, see Revenue Procedure 99-10 (1999-1 C.B.
272). You can find Rev. Proc. 99-10 on page 11 of Internal Revenue Bulletin 1999-2 at www.irs.gov.
Cedar Inc. is required to make a deposit of $1,000 on April 15 and $1,500 on May 15. It does not make the deposit on April 15. On May 15, Cedar
Inc. deposits $2,000. Under the new rule, which applies deposits to the most recent tax liability, $1,500 of the deposit is applied to the May 15
deposit and the remaining $500 is applied to the April deposit. Accordingly, $500 of the April 15 liability remains undeposited. The penalty on this
underdeposit will apply as explained above.
Trust fund recovery penalty.
If income, social security, and Medicare taxes that must be withheld are not withheld or are not deposited or paid to the United States Treasury,
the trust fund recovery penalty may apply. The penalty is the full amount of the unpaid trust fund tax. This penalty may apply to you if these unpaid
taxes cannot be immediately collected from the employer or business.
The trust fund recovery penalty may be imposed on all persons who are determined by the IRS to be responsible for collecting, accounting
for, and paying over these taxes, and who acted willfully in not doing so.
A responsible person can be an officer or employee of a corporation, a partner or employee of a partnership, an accountant, a volunteer
director/trustee, or an employee of a sole proprietorship. A responsible person also may include one who signs checks for the business or otherwise
has authority to cause the spending of business funds.
Willfully means voluntarily, consciously, and intentionally. A responsible person acts willfully if the person knows the required
actions are not taking place.
Separate accounting when deposits are not made or withheld taxes are not paid.
Separate accounting may be required if you do not pay over withheld employee social security, Medicare, or income taxes; deposit required taxes;
make required payments; or file tax returns. In this case, you would receive written notice from the IRS requiring you to deposit taxes in a special
trust account for the U.S. Government. You would also have to file monthly tax returns on Form 941-M, Employer's Monthly Federal Tax
12. Filing Form 941
Each quarter, all employers who pay wages subject to income tax withholding (including withholding on sick pay and supplemental unemployment
benefits) or social security and Medicare taxes must file Form 941, Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return. However, the following
- Seasonal employers who no longer file for quarters when they regularly have no tax liability because they have paid no wages.
To alert the IRS that you will not have to file a return for one or more quarters during the year, mark the
Seasonal employer box above line 1 on Form 941. The IRS will mail two Forms 941 to the seasonal filer once a year after March 1. The preprinted label
will not include the date the quarter ended. You must enter the date the quarter ended when you file the return. Generally, the IRS will not inquire
about unfiled returns if at least one taxable return is filed each year. However, you must mark the Seasonal employer box on every Form 941 you file.
Otherwise, the IRS will expect a return to be filed for each quarter.
- Household employers reporting social security and Medicare taxes and/or withheld income tax.
If you are a sole proprietor and file Form 941 for business employees, you may include taxes for household
employees on your Form 941. Otherwise, report social security and Medicare taxes and income tax withholding for household employees on Schedule H
(Form 1040), Household Employment Taxes. See Pub. 926, Household Employer's Tax Guide, for more information.
- Employers reporting wages for employees in American Samoa, Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, the U.S. Virgin
Islands, or Puerto Rico. If the employees are not subject to U.S. income tax withholding, use Form 941-SS. Employers in Puerto Rico use Form
- Agricultural employers reporting social security, Medicare, and withheld income taxes. Report these on Form 943,
Employer's Annual Tax Return for Agricultural Employees.
Form 941 e-file.
The Form 941 e-file program allows a taxpayer to electronically file Form 941 using a personal computer, modem, and commercial tax preparation
software. Contact the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 or visit the IRS Web Site at www.irs.gov/elec_sys/efile-bus.html for more information. See Pub.
1855 for technical specifications.
You may be able to file Form 941 and pay any balance due by phone. If you receive TeleFile materials with your Form 941 package, check page TEL-1
of the 941TeleFile Instructions to see if you qualify for this method of filing. If you have questions related to filing Form 941 using TeleFile, call
1-800-829-8815. This phone number is for 941TeleFile information only and is not the number used to file the return.
Electronic and magnetic tape filing by reporting agents.
Reporting agents filing Forms 941 for groups of taxpayers can file them electronically or on magnetic tape. See the reporting agent discussion in
section 6 of Pub. 15-A, Employer's Supplemental Tax Guide, for more information.
For each whole or part month a return is not filed when required (disregarding any extensions of the filing deadline), there is a penalty of 5% of
the unpaid tax due with that return. The maximum penalty is 25% of the tax due. Also, for each whole or part month the tax is paid late (disregarding
any extensions of the payment deadline), a penalty of 0.5% per month of the amount of tax generally applies. This penalty is 0.25% per month if an
installment agreement is in effect. You must have filed your return on or before the due date of the return to qualify for the reduced penalty. The
maximum for this penalty is also 25%. The penalties will not be charged if you have a reasonable cause for failing to file or pay.
Use of a reporting agent or other third-party payroll service provider does not relieve an employer of the responsibility to ensure that tax
returns are filed and all taxes are paid or deposited correctly and on time.
Do not file more than one Form 941 per quarter.
Employers with multiple locations or divisions must file only one Form 941 per quarter. Filing more than one return may result in processing delays
and may require correspondence between you and the IRS. For information on making corrections to previously filed returns, see section 13.
Hints on filing.
Do not report more than one calendar quarter on a return.
Use the preaddressed form mailed to you. If you do not have the form, get one from the IRS in time to file the return when due. If you use a form
that is not preaddressed, show your name and EIN on it. Be sure they are exactly as they appeared on earlier returns. See the Instructions for
Form 941 for information on preparing the form.
If you go out of business, you must file a final return for the last quarter in which wages are paid. If you continue to pay wages or other
compensation for quarters following termination of your business, you must file returns for those quarters. See the Instructions for Form 941 for
details on how to file a final return.
If you are required to file a final Form 941, you are also required to furnish Form W-2 to your employees by the due date of the final Form
941. File Forms W-2 and W-3 with the SSA by the last day of the month that follows the due date of your final Form 941. See the Instructions for
Forms W-2 and W-3 for more information.
Filing late Forms 941 for prior years.
If you are filing an original return for a quarter in a prior year and you are using the current year form, you will have to modify Form 941. A
form for a particular year generally can be used without modification for any quarter within that year. For example, a form with any 2002 revision
date (e.g., January or October 2002) generally can be used without modification for any quarter of 2002.
In all cases, however, be sure to correctly fill out the Date quarter ended section at the top of the form. If you are modifying a form with
preprinted information, change the date (the date is shown with the month and year the quarter ends; for example, JUN02 would be for the quarter
ending June 30, 2002). Cross out any inapplicable tax rate(s) shown on the form and write in the rate from Table 3 below. You can get tax rates and
wage base limits for years not shown in the table from the IRS.
The instructions on the form may be inappropriate for the year for which you are reporting taxes because of changes in the law, regulations,
or procedures. The revision date (found under the form number at the top of the form) will tell you the year for which the form was developed. Contact
the IRS if you have any questions.
Table 3. Social Security and Medicare Tax Rates (For 3 prior years)
||Wage Base Limit (each employee)
||Tax Rate on Taxable Wages and Tips
Reconciling Forms W-2, W-3, and 941.
When there are discrepancies between Forms 941 filed with the IRS and Forms W-2 and W-3 filed with the SSA, we must contact you to resolve the
To help reduce discrepancies -
- Report bonuses as wages and as social security and Medicare wages on Forms W-2 and 941.
- Report both social security and Medicare wages and taxes separately on Forms W-2, W-3, and 941.
- Report social security taxes on Form W-2 in the box for social security tax withheld, not as social security wages.
- Report Medicare taxes on Form W-2 in the box for Medicare tax withheld, not as Medicare wages.
- Make sure the social security wage amount for each employee does not exceed the annual social security wage base limit.
- Do not report noncash wages that are not subject to social security or Medicare taxes as social security or Medicare wages.
- If you used an EIN on any Form 941 for the year that is different from the EIN reported on Form W-3, enter the other EIN on Form W-3 in the
box for Other EIN used this year.
To reduce the discrepancies between amounts reported on Forms W-2, W-3, and 941 -
- Be sure the amounts on Form W-3 are the total amounts from Forms W-2.
- Reconcile Form W-3 with your four quarterly Forms 941 by comparing amounts reported for -
- Income tax withholding.
- Social security wages, social security tips, and Medicare wages and tips. Form W-3 should include Form 941 adjustments only for the current
year (i.e., if the Form 941 adjustments include amounts for a prior year, do not report those prior year adjustments on the current-year Forms W-2 and
- Social security and Medicare taxes. The amounts shown on the four quarterly Forms 941, including current-year adjustments, should be
approximately twice the amounts shown on Form W-3. This is because Form 941 includes both the employer and employee shares of social security and
- Advance earned income credit.
Do not report on Form 941 backup withholding or income tax withholding on nonpayroll payments such as pensions, annuities, and gambling winnings.
Nonpayroll withholding must be reported on Form 945 (see the separate Instructions for Form 945 for details). Income tax withholding
required to be reported on Forms 1099 or W-2G must be reported on Form 945. Only taxes and withholding properly reported on Form W-2 should be
reported on Form 941.
Amounts reported on Forms W-2, W-3, and 941 may not match for valid reasons. If they do not match, you should determine that the reasons are valid.
Keep your reconciliation so you will have a record of why amounts did not match in case there are inquiries from the IRS or the SSA.
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